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Us 14, U.n. 11, Boehner 9, Romney 7, Damascus 7, Syria 6, U.s. 5, Israel 5, Ashleigh 5, Tuscany 4, United Nations 3, Nick 3, Cnn 3, Washington 3, New York 3, Aarp 2, Unitedhealthcare Insurance Company 2, Richard Roth 2, Lindsey Lohan 2, Elizabeth 2,
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  CNN    CNN Newsroom    News/Business. Latest on the day's top news stories  
   with a focus on global news, trends and destinations. New.  

    November 29, 2012
    8:00 - 9:00am PST  

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well, that's a veritable love fest compared to this icy visit between george w. bush and al gore, the latter having won the popular vote but losing the supreme court decision. and that was a cold day, you can see by the snow. sometimes the winner has more than a handshake for the runner up. look at president clinton bess towing the medal of freedom on world war ii veteran bob dole. that's just weeks after re-election back in 1996. why do i show you all of these? because it all brings me to a very special party of two having lunch next hour at the white house. president obama, as promised, in his victory speech 23 days ago, is hosting mitt romney, who has made no secret that he really thought that it would be the other way around. and our dan lothian is counting down the minutes, standing by at the white house, even though, dan, you are not invited to the luncheon, nor am i or anyone else at the camera, a mic or even a pen. why is it so private? >> reporter: that's right. oftentimes, the president will
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have meetings here at the white house, lunches or official meetings, where the president is not invited in. our cameras are not allowed in. sometimes our cameras are allowed in but no editorial presence. this one of those where no cameras allowed in, we're hopeful the white house will take a pick pur and release it to us, but at this point no plans for us to sort of get a peek inside that room and listen in on that conversation. although we hope that there will be some kind of a readout to give us some indication as to what the two politicians discussed. >> you know, dan, oftentimes people say these meetings are just to make nice or to have a good photo op. in this particular case, not unlike other cases, there's talk about the potential of a position, maybe a high-level position, maybe cabinet level, in the obama administration for governor romney. and that's not so far off base. i mean, we have plenty of history to show that politicians have crossed over. just take a look at your screen. this is a great example of
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former presidents who have reached across the aisle to take high-level members of the opposite party into their very close cabinet. so we have any idea if we might see one more of these screens added today with governor romney? >> you know, no, not as far as we're hearing from those close to governor romney, and, of course, aides here at the white house saying absolutely not. this is not an attempt for the president to bring him here to the white house to talk about a potential job. this is pretty much a courtesy call. the president made the invitation during his victory speech, said he wanted to sit down and talk with mitt romney about moving the country forward. he also said there was some things that mitt romney -- some ideas he had on the campaign trail that were not partisan ideas, but were smart ideas. ways to create jobs for middle class americans, so he wanted to talk to him about that. and the president specifically pointed to the fact that mitt romney did a good job in turning the olympics around and thought that some of what he did with the olympics could translate to
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making the federal government more efficient. so it really is all about sort of talking about ways that they can perhaps, you know, use ideas together to move the country forward. but no indication at all that there's some other kind of job hanging out there, that the president plans to offer. >> i know that the governor also has a meeting with his former running mate, paul ryan. but i think -- what i think a lot of people want to know if we're going to hear from governor romney today. oftentimes we have a stakeout, microphone or camera position outside the white house. is that the case today? i know we can't get into that private dining room. what about outside after the governor leaves? >> reporter: we have cameras everywhere, to not only get a shot of the governor going in, but also if he wants to say something, we'll be there, as well. as you pointed out, my colleague, jim acosta, said about a half hour ago, according to a republican source, governor romney was meeting with representative ryan at a hotel here in it d.c. and so it's unclear. we have located where that hotel
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is, and if we'll be staking that out as well. but we just want to be able to hear a little bit about what is in governor romney's head, what is he thinking, what does he hope to accomplish by this meeting? at this point, we're watching and waiting, but so far, nothing. >> we've got to make sure that microphone and the hot mic position is in on position. dan lothian, thank you so much. unlike governor romney, paul ryan does have some other pressing government business to actually tend to today. that former gop running mate did hold on to his house seat in this election, and he's going to keep his chairmanship in the budget committee, as well, in the 113th congress. so that will put him front and center in the fiscal cliff debate. also earns him a meeting today with the current treasury secretary, tim geithner. cnn's kate ballolduan on capito hill, day 33, eek, 33 days, tim geithner kicking into this process. we would assume possibly pushing into high gear or more of a
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photo op or a little bit of both? >> reporter: it remains to be seen. i hate having to say that for our viewers, but we're waiting to hear exactly what comes out of these meetings. important, nonetheless, because these are face-to-face meetings with principle players, timothy guide next the treasury secretary, tapped by the president to be the point person to spearhead the negotiations with congress over these fiscal cliff negotiations. we had had a brief shot of him arriving this morning as he was coming into the capitol. he's being joined by rob neighbors, the white house liaison to congress. he's a man that has long standing relationships with folks on capitol hill. series of meetings, all individual meetings, senator reid, told by my colleagues he's in a meeting with house speaker john boehner and mitch mcconnell, top republican in the senate, as well as nancy pelosi, the top democrat in the house. now coming out of the meeting with senator reid, i'm not getting much at the moment from sources but one democratic aide
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tells me the following. he says that we -- this aide told me, we're all on the same page today. it's more about republicans. that goes without saying, because these negotiations really were focusing on the negotiations between the white house and speaker boehner, even before the meeting, which the treasury secretary and speaker boehner, a spokesman gave us this following statement, ashleigh. i want to read to you. he says, we accepted this meeting with the expectation that the white house team will bring a specific plan for real spending cuts, because spending cuts that washington democrats will accept is what is missing from the balanced approach that the president says he wants. clearly, what that tells me, republicans are putting the ball in the white house's court, and democrats' court to come forward with spending cuts. i'll tell you just as quickly, i've been told by senate -- democratic aides all week they believe it's absolutely the opposite. that democrats, the white house, they're waiting for republicans to come forth with a series proposal of revenue, and specifics on that, they'll be
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putting on the table. we are obviously eagerly awaiting to hear what comes out of these meetings and eagerly awaiting to hear from speaker boehner, speaking to cameras in just about a half hour and i'll be there. >> that's a good thing. and one thing quickly that it seems to signify as well, what you just read, that statement also signifies maybe that phone conversation yesterday between speaker boehner and the president might not have been as productive as we would have liked. >> we're all trying to read between the lines. no one has a full readout of the call. we know from sources that the president and speaker boehner did speak yesterday. but i want to point this out, as we're all trying to read the tea leaves on progress, is there progress, is there not progress, we have had no public evidence of progress for sure to date. and my colleague, jessica yellin, got an important note from a source said in the call the president stressed to boehner that rates were going up on the wealthy, and there was no deal without it. that is a major sticking point, ashleigh. you know that. has been all along.
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and i'll tell you, there's no indication from republicans right now they're moving off their position. they don't think that's the right path to go. they're sticking to their guns so far. as you can see, as we've been saying all along, it appears and we'll see what comes out of these meetings, both sides are staring each other down and doesn't look like they're off the starting blocks yet. >> i have a son in kindergarten, and his teacher is very good at negotiating people who are intransie intransient, maybe they should call her. kate bolduan, look forward to better news. back in a moment. l. l. i need to rethink the core of my portfolio. what i really need is sleep. introducing the ishares core, building blocks for the heart of your portfolio. find out why 9 out of 10 large professional investors choose ishares for their etfs. ishares by blackrock. call 1-800-ishares for a prospectus which includes investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. read and consider it carefully
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what are you waiting for? shopping fdon't wait. coverage? open enrollment ends december 7th. now's the time to take action. call unitedhealthcare today. get a good look at these. 12 hours ago, these things were golden. potential tickets to a brand-new life of champagne wishes and caviar dreams. and today they're ready for the macy's parade confetti machine. it doesn't matter who gets their hands on these things. now they are just junk, pure and simple. my powerball team lost and so did other lottery pool players across the country. but at least two tickets in missouri and arizona are about to launch lifestyles of the rich and famous. for someone i hope is going a friend of mine.
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in about an hour, arizona lottery officials may be about to tell us who won there, because they've got a news conference scheduled. but right now, it's all a big mystery. look at all these people hoping for this same thing. everyone so excited! and today just dashed because that jackpot ended up going up to an estimated $570 million. don't be too upset, though. double-check your tickets. i did before i tore them. even if you didn't win the jackpot, you still might end up a millionaire. if some of your numbers matched. or you might end up winning the $4 that my lottery pool won. we're going to let it ride as christine romans advised us. if you're waking up to something else on the west coast right now, looking out your window, don't expect there will be sunny skies. chances are it is going to be raking and not just a little. your drive to work can look something a lot like that. ugly. most of northern california is expecting 8 to 10 inches of rain by sunday.
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that spells flood watches. they're already out for several areas. the wind speeds also could reach up to 70 miles per hour. that means trees could be toppled and also brings down power lines and creates a lot of problems for residents. so workers have been doing what you're seeing on your screen right now. dragging away scorched trees to prevent them from actually causing the problems and also prevent landslides. also, it is very hot in the rockies and central plains right now. temperatures, believe it or not, 20 to 25 degrees above normal for the next five days. and for people who live there, the temperatures are not expected to go back to normal until the middle of the week. so we're keeping a really close eye on some of this nasty weather, and troubling weather, as well. whether it is on the west coast or on the east coast, because a young lady named lindsey lohan is brewing up yet another storm in the form of trouble. i.e., another arrest.
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we usually just shy away from this, because it's become a bit common place, by at this point, mug shots of lohan or video of her sitting in a court are starting to become so familiar, they're common place, and now another round of allegations just about to be added to this bad girl image. it actually could end up added to her criminal rap sheet, too. this time it wasn't drunk driving, it wasn't a hit and run or a jewelry theft. this time she was arrested early this morning for allegedly punching a woman at a new york nightclub. howard bragman is the founder of 15 minutes pr, vice chairman of reputation.com. boy, she needs some reputation.com work, howard. i want to ask you a serious question about this young lady. it was just about four or five days ago, i was watching her in her first what was supposed to be comeback role as liz taylor in the lifetime movie "liz and dick." it didn't do as well as they expected, but it did well, 3.5 million people watched. a lot of people thought this was
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her big chance, yet again, another big chance. how do you read this latest fias fiasco? >> actually, it wasn't a huge success, with all of the hype and attention, lifetime has had three or four other movies that have done better this year. and more importantly, the critics savaged -- savaged her performance. so i was kind of expecting another fall from grace from lindsey. not that we don't expect it, you know, pretty much every week. but -- [ phone ringing ] >> that might be her calling, howard. by all means, you're going to have to take that call. she needs a lot of help. let me ask you something. you said that you didn't expect lindsey lohan to actually reach age 30. she's a bad girl, and she has been convicted of all sorts of things. and we know she has had problems with substance abuse. do you think it's really that bad, that this girl may not make it? >> i really do. because what we see with time and time again, this is a girl who doesn't understand how deep trouble she's in. i tried to google on the internet how many times she has
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been arrested. i got the number 16, but it seemed to be a few months old. and we're between 15 and 20 arrests. that's just not normal. and what people do -- what i've learned from clients and talking to a lot of psychologists who deal with this, is people get worse. they get more of themselves, not better, unless they acknowledge they have a problem and they get some help. and this is clearly a girl who has not acknowledged she has any problems. every time we see her, it's someone else's fault, someone else did something to her. and personal responsibility and acceptance and understanding is the basis of recovery. >> one of the other things i found from some of the notes that i read on your thoughts about this, howard, was that she shouldn't have -- in your opinion, she shouldn't have taken this latest movie, even though everyone was suggesting this was her shot. this was her ability to prove herself again after so much trouble. why do you think she shouldn't have actually made a go at this and tried to make right?
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>> because i think -- i think it's one thing to be in a movie and act and be a character. it's another thing to come out and be a beloved legend. and those are very big heels to fill. and she clearly didn't fill them that well. it's a really daunting acting task. and you set yourself up for failure by being on this huge pedestal. and this is a girl who doesn't need a failure. what i think she needs is a number of small successes to feel better about herself. it just didn't work. i kind of saw this coming as -- and it was not at all surprised by the reviews, by the performance, and the movie was, you know, watchable in that it was amusing, but kind of sad, because i knew elizabeth, and i spent time with elizabeth. and she was not elizabeth taylor. >> i mean, that's a really big and tough role to take on.
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a titan of industry in her own right who has had her own troubles. so they could have had -- she could have had some kismet with that role. but it's troubling to see her being brought out of the cop shop with a coat over her head. i hope the best for her. howard, thank you. it's nice to see you. do appreciate it. howard bragman with reputation.com and 15 minutes pr. we want to also mention that police have declined to say whether lindsay lohan is actually going to face assault charges after all of this. we'll be right back. i love 'em even more. i earn 1% cash back everywhere, every time. 2% on groceries. 3% on gas. automatically. no hoops to jump through. that's 1% back on... [ toy robot sounds ] 2% on pumpkin pie. and apple. 3% back on 4 trips to the airport. it's as easy as... -[ man ] 1... -[ woman ] 2... [ woman ] 3. [ male announcer ] the bankamericard cash rewards card. apply online or at a bank of america near you.
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just three weeks since president obama was re-elected and already there are rumblings of a major shift in american involvement in the crisis in syria. by all accounts, this is a very messy and lethal civil war with no easy solution, especially for outside countries who would like to help but can't afford the immense risks that come attached. now today the "new york times" is reporting that the united states may start directly arming the rebels in syria. that's opposed to what we're already doing, sending humanitarian and intelligence support. and all of this comes as the rebels appear to be getting somewhat stronger. take a look at this video that was shot by cnn.
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it is the wreckage of a fighter jet that syrian rebels shot down. the third such aircraft that the rebels say they have shot down in just the last 24 hours. and, of course, we don't know yet where the anti aircraft weapons that were used actually came from. cnn's nick paton walsh was there and joins us live now with the latest in beirut. nick, i don't know if there's any feeling on the ground from our reporters there who are having such trouble just reporting from that country, because we're not allowed in. whether the rebels feel as though this actually may happen sooner rather than later. the americans may come to their rescue with relationshweaponry. >> reporter: i think there are some who consider it's too little, too late. we have asked for substantial amounts of military aid. the u.s. has only provided nonlethal support so far and there are been reports the gulf states are loyal to the sunni
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majority in that rebel movement, maybe supplying arms. but i think if you ask most rebels now, they see the curve on their side, see themselves seizing weapons, caches, at quite a substantial rate, downing aircraft, too. and i think if the u.s. went and said, okay, we want to help you out, that may get a fairly chilled response from much of the rebel movement and certainly i think they may recognize this is programs a late in the game stage to try and be able to influence the outcome of this civil war, rather than to actually assist the rebels in winning. ashleigh? >> nick, just before my next question, a little bit of breaking news i want to get to our viewers. we're getting reports the road to the damascus international airport has been shut down because of clashes and military operations on the outskirts of the airport and on the outskirts of that major city. i'm also hearing that cell phone outages and the internet has been now blocked in syria, which means communications for so many are now down and syria has been now shut oh of essentially from
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the rest of the world. you know, that sounds awfully foreboding. but at the same time, we're coming up in a few months on two years since all of this began. why am i only hearing about internet blackouts now? this would seem like a very big tactic for the government to use much earlier on before we started seeing all those horrors. >> reporter: i mean, today that is, to be honest, some quite substantial news. weeks of rebel successes but the calculation made by the government, if it is the government shutting down the internet, the rebels benefit more from the internet being on, use it to spread news and put video out of what they have been doing. the rebels benefit more than the regime benefits from the internet being on. does suggest some sort of crisis within the inner regime and damascus. there could be other explanations, a technical hitch or rebel success causing this to happen. but bear in mind today yes we are also hearing of substantial movement near damascus international airport. i should bear in mind, reuters reporting that two u.n. austrian
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peace-keepers were wounded, not life threateningly, but wounded near damascus airport. not clear by who. but that comes as reports of free syrian army rebels moving towards the airport within two kilometers, perhaps. emirates and egyptair cancelling flights until further notice, saying for the safety of the staff. and yesterday closed due to maintenance. something is certainly happening in that very significant airport to the east. that will be causing great tension in damascus. that link to the internet shut off and cell phones being down, as well. we can't tell. but certainly today for the first time i think in quite a number of weeks things are definitely changing on the ground of damascus and it looks like it's in the favor of the rebels. ashleigh? >> and i just want to be absolutely clear, you're coming to us from beirut at this moment, keeping a close eye. i know that our reporters who are based in lebanon next door to syria are trying at all times to get in and out of that country safely. our colleague, arwa damon, is in country right now. she is in syria but in a situation where she can't come to us live right now, so we
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appreciate you doing this for us, nick. keep us updated as to what you hear about the situation around damascus. nick paton walsh for us live. thank you. my doctor told me calcium is efficiently absorbed in small continuous amounts. citracal slow release continuously releases calcium plus d with efficient absorption in one daily dose. citracal slow release. now is a good time to think about your options. are you looking for a plan that really meets your needs and your budget? as you probably know, medicare only covers about 80% of your part b medical expenses. the rest is up to you. so consider an aarp medicare supplement insurance plan,
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you take a vacation to indulge and enjoy. but that doesn't mean you have to spend a lot of money to have fun. here are some tips i picked up while traveling through tuscany. number one, don't be afraid to rent a car and drive. many people say driving in tuscany is terrifying. but if you rent a compact manual car, you will find driving is a breeze. plus, a compact car is cheaper than a luxury car or an suv. so brush up on your stick. number two. don't want to drive? take the train. while traveling through italy,
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my family and i took the train to florence. it was fast and we saved money. because we didn't have to pay to park. number three. rent a villa instead of a hotel. renting a home will help you save on accommodations and food, because if it there's a kitchen, you can prepare some of your meals there. looking to save more? the more people you can fit in, the cheaper it will be. we stayed at this villa, and what i loved about staying off the beaten path and away from tourists, getting to explore a neighborhood and really experience tuscany's culture. if you stay at a villa or small town, make sure to shop at their local markets and try their meats and cheeses. yum. and to save, buy your wine at the grocery store. one suggestion, look for the bottles with the black rooster symbol. this means the wine is of higher quality. i hope these tips help you plan a budget-friendly trip.
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they worked for me on my trip to tuscany, and i'm sure they can work for you, no matter where you travel. i'm jackie castillo with this week's "travel insider." less. that's one smart board. what else does it do, reverse gravity? [ laughs ] [ laughs ] [ whooshing ] tell me about it. why am i not going anywhere? you don't believe hard enough. a smarter way to shop around. now that's progressive. call or click today. [ grunting ] but i'm still stubbed up. [ male announcer ] truth is, nyquil doesn't unstuff your nose. what? [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus liquid gels speeds relief to your worst cold symptoms plus has a decongestant for your stuffy nose. thanks. that's the cold truth!
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a special assembly in egypt is rushing a vote on a final draft of a new constitution for that country. all at the same time, as protests are going on outside against the president of that country. and why is it that they're rushing this draft? word is that the constitutional court has a plan to rule this weekend on whether to just dissolve that assembly completely. some of the assembly members have walked out, saying they're angry. they're accusing islamists of trying to impose their vision. president morsi has faced some very, very tough criticism since he granted himself massive powers until a brand-new constitution is drafted. he declared last week that there is no court anywhere in that
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country that could overturn anything he decides. if the officials pass the draft today, though, it will go before egyptians for a popular vote in 15 days. and if that is approved, president morsi is going to lose a lot of those extended powers. all of this as images like this play out, and these are not good for egyptians and they are not good for americans. the u.s. embassy in cairo has been closed. protesters are blocking the entrance, and the clashes are happening very, very close by. there is no indication at this time, however, that our embassy there is threatened. stay tuned. we'll keep you posted to the developments in that country. and also in the middle east, we are seeing a rare moment of cooperation today between the palestinian authority and hamas. it's coming thousands of miles away from where they usually live. they're in new york, and both sides want their united nations status elevated. what does that mean? does it really do anything for
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them? basically, it's part of the palestinian effort, going on for decades now, to be an official country. equal in status with israel, and the united states. and anybody else belonging to the u.n. just for some context here, though, the plo has been a permanent observer. that's been their status since 1974. and that has given palestinians the right to speak out and be heard at the assembly. but it doesn't give them a right to vote. richard roth, who covers the u.n. extensively and is our cnn favorite on this topic, is there to really give a little more context as to what they wanted to and what kind of status it would give them and how far up in status it would actually elevate them. richard, tell us what it means. >> okay. first, just to clarify, hamas not really here with the palestinians. the palestinian president abbas is in new york, met with the secretary general last night. yes, this is, as usual with the u.n., words matter.
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sometimes one letter in a document could be a time bomb. what we have here is the u.n. upgrading later today the status of the palestinians here. they are in effect going to become sort of a state within a group of states. but really, as you mentioned, they won't have the right to vote. they're not going to be an official number 194 of the united nations rostrum of countries. but it does give them access to other u.n. affiliated, other organizations, such as the international criminal court, where if they wanted to, and as the palestinian am bats baas dor said, if israeli behaviors itself, they could go to the haig to try to accuse israel of war crimes. israel says it could do the same against the palestinians, but there are a lot of people upset by this. think think there are risks to the overall peace process which many people have said it's got to be two states, two groups talking to each other. it's a political win for abbas once this vote happens, especially after hamas was gathering a lot of support after
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the engagement with israel a couple weeks ago. ashleigh. >> so interesting to see these two parties coming together in this effort, although not surprising, considering they both want the same thing. they want to be recognized. but what's fascinate, and you alluded to this when you talked to the criminal court, et cetera, the u.s. and is britain are not the least bit pleased about this effort and they do oppose this. give me some context. >> right. let's listen to secretary of state hillary clinton last night in washington on her reasons for opposing this bid today by the palestinians. >> no matter what happens at the united nations, it will not produce the outcome that this government, this president and certainly i strongly support. and the only way to get a lasting solution is to commence direct negotiations and we need an environment conducive to that. >> the palestinians say they
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were getting -- by britain and other countries for concessions on what they were requesting to be more specific, they wouldn't go to the icc, the criminal court, in order to get these european votes. it's important for the palestinians not to just get the, quote, usual band of countries that support them no matter what here. they would like to get a sizeable number, including western countries. france will vote in favor, spain and portugal. but the u.k. will abstain, germany will abstain. all they need is a simple majority here. but the way forward, maybe it inches everyone closer to that two-state negotiating process. or it's just symbolic. netanyahu of israel says this will not accomplish anything, about not hasten any type of peace agreement. they still haven't talked in months. >> and i'm sure it's not the least bit pleasing to the palestinians to hear secretary of state say we don't support it because we don't think it would work. and clearly a lot of politics playing out there. richard roth, keep an eye on it for us. thank you, sir. the vote starts later today. 3:00 p.m. eastern at the u.n.
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want to take you live to capitol hill where house speaker john boehner is speaking live to the press and emerged from are a meeting with timothy geithner, treasury secretary. let's listen in to what he has to say. >> i met with erskine bowles and business leaders about averting the fiscal cliff, and achieving t the balance the white house says it wants. i made clear we put real concessions on the line by putting revenues on the table right up front. unfortunately, many democrats continue to rule out sensible spending cuts that must be part of any significant agreement that will reduce our deficit. and mr. bowles himself said there is no serious discussion of spending cuts so far. and unless there is, there is a real danger of going off the fiscal cliff. listen, going off the fiscal cliff will hurt our economy and will cost american jobs.
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republicans have taken action to avert the fiscal cliff by passing legislation to stop all the tax hikes. to replace the sequester, and pave way for -- pave the way for tax reform and entitlement reform. and we're the only ones with a balanced plan to protect the economy, protect american jobs, and protect the middle class from the fiscal cliff. but without spending cuts and entitlement reforms, it's going to be impossible to address our country's debt crisis. and get our economy going again and to create jobs. so right now, all eyes are on the white house. the country doesn't need a victory lap. it needs leadership. it's time for the president, congressional democrats, to tell the american people what spending cuts they're really willing to make. with that i'll take a few questions. >> speaker boehner, why will you not tell democrats what specific spending cuts you would like to see, especially within en
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titlements? >> it's been very clear over the last year-and-a-half, i've talked to the president about many of them. you can can look at our budget. where we outline very specific proposals that we passed in last year's budget and the budget from the year before. we know what the menu is. what we don't know is what the white house is willing to do to get serious about solving our debt crisis. >> so your 2011 position still stands then? are you still offering -- those talks from 2011? is that still the basis here? >> i'm not going to get into the details, but it's very clear what kind of spending cuts need to occur. and we have no idea what the white house is willing to do. >> to this point, most public statements have been optimistic. confident, hopeful. we're all sensing a very different tone from you right now. are you walking away from talks, have is things completely broken
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down, mr. speaker? >> no, no, no. stop. i've got to tell you, i'm disappointed in where we are, and disappointed in what's happened over the last couple weeks. but going over the fiscal cliff is serious business. and i'm here seriously trying to resolve it. and i would hope the white house would get serious as well. paul. [ inaudible question ] meeting with secretary geithner or your phone call with president obama last night. could you tell us something about that phone call? >> well, we had a very nice conversation last night. it was direct. and straight forward. but this assessment i give you today would be a product of both of those conversations. >> how much would you be open to the idea of discretionary spending cuts as part of a down payment to get to a longer-range solution on entitlements and tax
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reform? >> there are a lot of options on the table, including that one. >> mr. speaker, before the election, you were asked whether if it obama won taxes would have to go up. and you sounded like you opposed that. now you're acknowledging that they will. >> the day after the election, i came here and made it clear that republicans would put revenue on the table. as a way to begin to move the process to get this resolved. >> right. so my question is, what message do you have for people who look at the negotiating division, and believe that it's inevitable that you'll have to accept some compromise on tax rates? >> the revenue is on the table. but revenue was only on the table if there were serious spending cuts as part of this agreement. it has to be part of the agreement. we have a debt crisis. we're spending too much. and while we're willing to put revenue on the table, we have to recognize, it's the spending that's out of control.
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>> mr. speaker. roughly what size spending cuts do you think it would take to reach a deal on the fiscal cliff, and do you think that at least the promise of spending cuts has to be included in this level deal at this time? >> i don't think there's -- i don't think it's a productive for either side to lay out hard lines in terms of what the size of the spending cuts ought to be. there's clearly -- there are a lot of options on how you could get there. but the second part of your question was? >> my question is, do you think the promise of spending cuts has to be included in the deal that averts the fiscal cliff? >> listen, there's a framework that we presented to the white house two weeks ago. the framework is -- has been agreed to in terms of really a down payment on the end of this year. that would include spending cuts and it would include revenue. setting up a process for
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entitlement reform next year, and tax reform next year. but this was way out of balance. and not a recognition on the part of the white house about the serious spending problem that we have. [ inaudible question ] going over the fiscal cliff, you called serious business, extending the lower tax rates -- [ inaudible question ] >> i'm going to do everything i can to avoid putting the american economy, the american people through the fiasco of going over the fiscal cliff. >> which is worse for the economy? [ inaudible question ] could you include a debt limit that is in the overall package? >> as i told the president a couple weeks ago, there's a lot of things i've wanted in my life, but almost all of them had a price tag attached to them. and if we're going to talk about
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the debt limit in this, then we're -- there's going to be some price tag associated with it. >> last question. >> are you standing by your dollar for dollar -- the increase in the debt limit for cuts? >> are i continue to believe that any increase in the debt limit has to be accompanied by spending reductions that meet or exceed it. >> thank you, mr. speaker. >> speaker boehner speaking to the press outside of the offices on capitol hill. not really yielding any information, though. the intransigence it seems on both sides continues. but it definitely continues to sound like a campaign on both sides, as well. just a couple highlights for you. the speaker saying the democrats can't seem to come to any kind of decision on sensible spending cuts. he also highlighted that the agreements are seriously out of balance, in my opinion. that we have a serious spending problem in this country, as well that needs to be addressed. he also referred to his meeting earlier with the clinton chief of staffers, bowles, suggesting
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that we are only -- we're the only ones with a balanced plan to protect the americans from the fiscal cliff. i'm quoting the speaker here. right now, all eyes are on the white house. this country doesn't need a victory lap, he said. it needs a leader. those are the words of the house speaker, but it doesn't seem speaker, but it doesn't seem to suggest that the conversation that he had with the president did much to thenned impasse. more in a moment. make a wish! i wish we could lie here forever. i wish this test drive was over, so we could head back to the dealership. [ male announcer ] it's practically yours. test drive! but we still need your signature. volkswagen sign then drive is back. and it's never been easier to get a jetta. that's the power of german engineering. get $0 down, $0 due at signing, $0 deposit, and $0 first month's payment on any new volkswagen. visit vwdealer.com today. for the latest smartphone. you wanna see if walmart
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>> i continue to be troubled. >> we are significantly troubled. >> i want to say that i'm more troubled today. >> i'm more disturbed now than i was before. >> the whole issue of benghazi has been to me a tawdry affair. >> it would be an understatement at this point to say ms. rice has become a lightning rod for republican criticism and with it more political obstacles that could be in the way of any sort of nod she might get towards becoming secretary of state. that's if the ambassador is even nominated. no one might understand the challenges of being the u.s. ambassador to the united nations more than the man who was actually held that role, governor bill richardson, formerly of new mexico, served as the u.n. ambassador under president clinton. thank you, governor, senator -- not a governor. an ambassador for joining us. just before we came back from break you happened to mention to me that you had a phone call from ambassador rice last week.
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you're briefed. you say what's in the paerp. you did that. that's important for the country. go to the hill. talk to senators. don't hold back. >> so she did that yesterday, and they emerged, and you heard that line, that seemed very similar. everyone being more troubled than they were before. >> the problem is not what ambassador rice has done. it seems some of the intelligence reports were not as accurate as they should have been. >> okay. good point. good point. because she was privy to two different sets of reports. classified, unclassified. i know you know this drill. but she went on tv only saying what was m unclassified reports, even though it was in direct opposition to what was in the -- how does that happen? why wouldn't you just say, you
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know, i'm not comfortable going on tv and saying this, call someone else? >> from what i understand and -- is that she was saying to the world on the news shows this is the information that i have. i think she is imminently qualified. the issue should be not on whether she read the right paper. the issue should be is she qualified? here's a woman who is a road scholar, assistant secretary for africa under the clinton administration. i worked with her on a lot of african issues. she was the leader at the u.n. security on the sanctions of north korea, on libya. she's close to the president. >> look, i don't think many people there certainly -- some people are contending her chops for the job of secretary of state. she's got a great resume. this doesn't answer the question of why you would take one set of documents that's classified and another that's unclassified when they don't agree with one another and only go on television and talk about one of them. instead of saying to the president and the rest of the administration, i'm not your
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man. i don't want to be on record saying something i know might be different. >> you know, ashleigh, i think this is parsing things. i really think that she -- >> republicans want facts and answers to those questions. >> she can't die vulg classified information in a public hearing or in a news show, and i also disagree with the view that the secretary of state and u.n. ambassador shouldn't go on news shows. their jobs are nonpolitical, but news shows, like what we're doing, is public information. the public needs to know. the senate needs to know. i think this has gotten a little politicized wrrn -- you know, tradition lab that the senate gives any president who they want in this most important cabinet job. you immediate to call speaker boehner and say that his live news conference took the rest of our time away from our conversation. ambassador richardson, thank you
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very much. will you come back? i don't think this is over. i have to wrap it there, but i'm going to hand over the baton to suzanne malveaux with "newsroom international." thanks for watching, everyone.
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